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 The Ultimate Review of Automaton

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Date d'inscription : 26/11/2013
Age : 26

The Ultimate Review of Automaton Empty
MessageSujet: The Ultimate Review of Automaton   The Ultimate Review of Automaton I_icon_minitimeVen 12 Déc - 13:13

With so many new thrash bands in Barcelona these days, you definitely need to make a difference. Times have changed since the good old times and the Ciutat Comtal (its nickname in our language) ain’t certainly the Bay Area but the requirements aren’t that distinct. A bigger quantity of groups usually affects the differentiation of the movement’s sound, making it generic and predictable, specially when there’s an unavoidable predominant trend of simply copying what vintage bands did. Yes, something similar also happened in the late-80’s when the subgenre became unstoppable and popular and every mother’s son was playing in a thrash group – as it was, as it soon will be for those bands which don’t offer anything special and truly distinctive, they’ll languish in obscurity playing covers at the local working men’s clubs. Some are headed for failure, others like Oppossed show certain inventive and might prevail.

Their stuff ain’t amazingly innovative but reveals a few fresh ideas, although tunes like “Madman’s Solution” are an unoriginal expression of archetypical retro-thrash, obeying the typical patterns set by the old school sound without offering anything particularly unique. In fact, that song only exposes a substantial lack of creativity and direction – it might start with an energetic rabid riff, leading however to scandalously inconsistent structures soon, presented by primitive ineffective variations of guitar lines, vocals are intentionally exhausting and repetitive as well, clearly intended to make those choruses infectious. The methodology of Oppossed remains absolutely predictable on following titles as “Piece Of Gear”, constructed on an also vigorous rhythm base, defined by more occasionally decent riffing – yet unable to achieve proper continuity. They introduce on it a quieter delicate break, which interferes with the dominant aggression for a second, in the style of that one Metallica always skip live from “The Four Horsemen” mid-section, though obviously poorer and unfocused. Apart from that exception, tempos are essentially dynamic, not totally frantic but getting outrageous and loose on “Prypiat” and “Point Of No Return”, which are the heavy artillery the band save for the last, whose spine are some Slayer riff rip-offs with total reminiscence of “Chemical Warfare” and “Raining Blood” but who else didn’t copy those ever since the mid-80’s to this date. So these guys increase speed and roughness, providing some heavier lines and fierce double bass-drum rhythms – thrash, crash, burn; another passionate effort inevitably ruined by undeniable technical limitations, certainly some sequences, which are exclusively intended to thrash hard and brutal, reveal severe handicaps on their execution, development and design, it takes more than velocity and raw riffs to make good thrash you see, these guys still need a lot of practice and take the song-writing process into greater consideration.

On other hand, this isn’t a band you could ask “Why do you play so be cool?” because Oppossed incorporate admirable heterogeneity to the tempos, not performing a dumb rhythm for long or simply trying to make it as fast as possible. The numerous tempo shifts crucially determine the direction of the music, which might be unfocused, yet at least it shows these guys’ determination for versatility and variation of song-structures, adding some alternative sequences to push excessive uniformity away – a concept which unlike most of their equals seems to obey a specific purpose, not just emulating the way some vintage group used to make it. Composition of the riffs obviously shows complete admiration for classic icons of the subgenre but not so stubbornly uninventive like others, some lines are surprisingly solid and effective, conceiving ideas of their own with bigger pretention than only be heavy, impress some chicks or spread some headbanging hysteria among the crowd. Those are admirable elements that make this music unexpectedly amusing and cool, no more ordinary retro-thrash stuff for hopeless nostalgics. Although some weak spots are difficult to ignore, as I mentioned there are huge technical limitations that inevitably determine restrictions and barriers the band can’t get through, these ain’t absolutely great performers and the absence of discipline and precision of most instrumental passages is scandalous. Oppossed are unable to reach continuity too often, this is plenty of riff modifications, though leading nowhere without specific vision or perspective – their drummer is usually uncontrolled on those chaotic double-bass drum kicks and those solos aren’t something you can take very seriously (they try to emulate the “Holy Wars…The Punishment Due” epic final pickin’ twice with catastrophic results). Vocals are however quite funny with that peculiar accent, emphasized modulation and lyrics the vocalist guy apparently inherited from Megadeth - do you really want to sound like the worst singer in the history of thrash? Go ahead, it didn’t come out that bad, surprisingly.

Automaton didn’t make history, neither provided really innovative talented songs, it lacks a lot of inspiration and most of all, technical consistency, skills, abilities, practice, whatever you want to call it – yet it’s much more distinctive and characteristic than most modern Catalan thrash material, not exclusively a cover EP including songs somebody else wrote before, with different titles. Oppossed also demonstrate greater ambition by putting more notable emphasis on instrumental passages, while others are playing it concise and minimalist, only trying to be so heavy and brutal without sense. But they still have a long long way to go and so many hours of practice to complete.
Final Score: 25 / 100
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